It’s not just the weather that can affect us!
It’s that time of the year again; the days are getting shorter, leaves are falling from trees, weather is getting worse (though we all have to admit October had some beautiful weather, talk about an Indian Summer!) and to top it up, the cold and flu season begins!
Though many people hate this time of the year, I personally love it; even if it is dark when I get up in the morning and when I get home, because for me, Christmas makes it all worth it – but that topic is for a totally different blog! One of the biggest downers of this season, I feel, is that colds and flues become commonplace and at least one person you know will have one of these viruses throughout the winter months.
Now if you’re like me and my family, we’re super sensitive about getting sick (we all hate it, who doesn’t?) so if we know anyone who is in anyway sick with either a cold or a flu, we basically disengage from them completely, to save ourselves. It’s very common in our family to be like this with each other, our friends and even our significant others (We REALLY don’t like getting sick, haha).
Like many people already this year, I experienced my first cold of the season a few weeks ago, and thankfully it wasn’t the worst cold I had – but still, who likes being sick?
Nobody – especially me!
My already heightened sense for avoiding getting the cold or flu can make me seem rude as I try desperately to stay away from any person I interact with who happens to have any symptoms. Just this morning I was on a bus on my way to work, and the women sitting in front of me coughed a lot (without covering her mouth – come on!) which resulted in me keeping my scarf around my mouth and nose for the rest of the twenty minute bus journey!
There are many ways (apart from staying away from people!) which are way more convenient to prevent yourself from getting sick however. Regularly washing your hands is one thing that can prevent nasty little germs from getting into your own or others systems. People should also cough or sneeze into the crease in their elbows as coughing into your hand can just spread the germs (I wouldn’t have cared where the lady earlier coughed into to be honest so long as it wasn’t the air I was breathing in!) Another way to prevent yourself from getting sick is to ensure you get enough sleep (8-10 hours is generally the healthy amount – but let’s be honest that Grey’s Anatomy was worth losing an hour of sleep for!)
You can also choose to give one other boost to your system by choosing healthier food options, and additionally get loads of vitamins in to you (ask your pharmacy for guidance) – although sometimes that brownie, while watching Grey’s Anatomy is worth getting sick over haha!
There is also one other really effective way of preventing the flu, which is often overlooked by the “healthy population” and that is by getting the flu shot!
There are many misconceptions about the flu vaccine, which I admit I also believed until quite recently. Firstly, it is not only for the elderly, the young and people with chronic diseases – these people are only asked to get it done as they in the high risk group and so need to take extra precautions. But the jab can be taken by anybody. I feel it would be very proactive if everyone got the flu vaccine, as it would decrease the risk of spreading the virus, especially to those most vulnerable, as mentioned above.
The second misconception that many people believe about the flu shot is that it actually gives you the flu and all the terrible symptoms that goes along with it. Though there is some truth to this in the fact that you may experience symptoms – as some people can experience low-grade fever, headache and muscle pain – the jab does not give you the flu. Some of the most common side effects of the flu vaccine are soreness and swelling where the shot was given, but this goes for every jab, including travel and tetanus vaccinations.
Let’s be honest, if you’ve ever had the flu (or even the dreaded man flu!) I’m sure you would agree with me in saying that you would rather experience a sore arm over being bedridden for weeks or even catching a virus that can be life threatening for elderly people or for those with chronic conditions.
So be weary this cold and flu season and take precautions to protect yourself from getting sick – maybe not as careful (and crazy) as I am, but even just to try to be aware of yourself and your surroundings.
The MediStori Movement is focused on being proactive rather than reactive.
Try to be this way with all contagious illnesses, including the flu – wash your hands regularly; cover up your coughs and sneezes; eat as healthily as you can (within reason); sleep enough (at least 8 hours) and finally get the flu shot, if you can.
I know I’ll be doing all of these (and more) this winter season, and would love (for my safety, if not yours!) to try and do the same.
Anything is better than getting sick, right?
Thanks so much for reading,
The truth about Manflu… Enjoy!